The Spring Evaluation period is upon us, as each of Arizona's top prospects are traveling with their respective teams currently on the AAU/club circuit around the West, and taking part in numerous club tournaments around the country. As a result, our Arizona Preps' staff is also covering as many of these prospects as possible to watch these prospects and bring you our top overall performers from the spring.
Recently, the Southwest Showcase Main Event took place - kicking off the start to the 2018 club season in fine fashion. With the majority of the state's top club programs in participation, from many different age groups, and also many teams from outside of the state, this year's event was very exciting for players, fans, scouts and media to attend. Our complete Arizona Preps' staff was on hand throughout the entire event to watch much of the action in the 16U and 17U Divisions. There have been numerous other events also this spring that have taken place that we have covered as well, and as result, here are my top performers from the spring thus far - our top sleeper prospects.
Here are some of my top overall sleeper prospects that participated in recent events this spring, which has set up the Spring Evaluation Period quite nicely, as myself and our staff will continue to follow many of these prospects throughout the months of April and May . . .
Top 2018 Overall Sleeper Prospects
Cedric Bridges 6-5 SR PF Westview HS - 2018 Class
Bridges is a true power forward prospect. While a bit undersized, this young man competes at a high level and gets a lot done. Plays with amazing intensity and out competes many opposing players. A terrific athlete with excellent strength and compassion for the game. While he is not a very good perimeter shoot from longer ranges, Bridges is a nice scorer from mid-range and around the basket, where he flourishes. Bridges is a big-time game-time dunker that likes to overpower defenders with dunks and strong slashes to the basket. He plays much bigger than his size suggests. An excellent defender and rebounder. A nice talent late for a smaller college program.
Amarion Cash 6-3 SR SG Mountain Pointe HS - 2018 Class
Cash is a high-scoring guard prospect that is able to play both guard positions on the floor at times, but is at his best scoring the basketball. He enjoys having the basketball in his hands where he can create for others, but he does enjoy scoring the basketball. He is a good shooter of the basketball with a nice, left-handed shooting stroke with range on his shot. He has very good body control and is able to make plays for himself off the dribble. A good scorer in the open floor and in the lane. A good ball handler and passer. A very good on-the-ball defender that also plays passing lanes. A fundamentally sound performer, Cash is a solid overall guard prospect with nice potential for the future.
Khot Anyieth 6-5 SR SF Peoria HS - 2018 Class
Anyieth is a very talented and athletic combo-forward prospect that is able to play multiple positions on the floor, and, most importantly, defend multiple positions on the floor. He is a long, lengthy and rangy forward prospect with excellent toughness and a great motor. He accepts challenges on both ends of the floor and enjoys defending the opposing team's best offensive player. He runs the floor hard and is a good finisher and scorer while slashing to the basket, or in the open court. Still very thin physically, he will need to add more physical size and strength to maximize his potential as a player. Defensively, Anyieth is a nice asset to any team, as he uses his superior length to contest and block/change shots. He also plays passing lanes very well, and makes it difficult for offensive players to get into any rhythm. This young man has serious upside for the future, and is a serious sleeper prospect for a smaller college program.
Karon Bailey 6-9 SR PF AZ Compass Prep - 2018 Class
Bailey is a nice talent for a taller wing prospect with a good overall feel for the game. He has nice overall size and a good overall skill level as well. He is a native of New York, and will need to go to a junior college as a result of his poor academic performance. As a result, Bailey is among the better overall talents in Arizona's 2018 class. A nice combo-forward prospect with a nice overall skillset and an ability to make for himself and others off the dribble. He has the potential to really blossom into a nice talent.
Kyle Patterson 6-7 JR PF Perry HS -2019 Class
Patterson is a nice left-hander post player that is undersized but gets a lot done in the paint. A strong low-post player that has excellent footwork which allows him to make plays around the basket and at a high rate with a nice ability to score the basketball. Patterson is a nice find and has been one the best sleeper prospects that I have seen this spring. Patterson is an active rebounder and low post defender that plays with good intensity and make plays that most players his size cannot. He plays with good overall intensity and makes play at a high rate. A good overall sleeper prospect for the 2019 class.
Carrington Wiggins 6-1 SR PG/SG AZ Compass Prep - 2018 Class
Wiggins moved to the state of Arizona this fall from Detroit, MI. An excellent scorer and shooter of the basketball with range on his shot and a quick release. Capable of playing the point guard position and also making plays for his teammates off the dribble. Able to get into the lane and finish strong at the rim. A very good scorer. A very good defender with quick hands and feet. Pushes the basketball up the floor. An intriguing prospect that could play at the division-I level at the right program.
Top Overall 2019 Class Sleeper Prospects
Jalen Graham 6-9 JR PF Mountain Pointe HS - 2019 Class
Graham is a big-time surging post prospect with loads of talent for the future. He is coming off a big season as a junior where he had a strong performance throughout the season while leading his team to a strong state finish. Graham may just be the best sleeper prospect in the state right now as a result of his length, athleticism, ability to run the floor and make plays inside the paint and finish strong at the rim. He is a nice talent with raw potential for the future, and will need to get it done in the classroom over time to raise his recruiting stock to another level.
Jaret Allen 6-5 JR SG/SF Deer Valley HS - 2019 Class
Allen is a nice looking shooting guard prospect that is capable of playing either as a small forward or as shooting guard prospect. A very good shooter of the basketball, Allen has a nice ability to play the game, although he still needs to add more physical size to his thin frame. As a result, he will see the majority of his college recruitment during his senior season. I was very high on this young man early and am still high on ability to play the game but he will need to add some serious size to maximize his potential as a player. Set to have a very good spring performance for himself.
Brandon Savage 6-8 JR Deer Valley HS - 2019 Class
Savage is an active post prospect that competes on both ends of the floor hard and runs the floor very well. Still a little raw offensively, Savage has developed a great deal over the last year and is improving a great deal – suggesting that he will only continue to improve much more, as a result of his tremendous upside. Savage is capable of playing both post positions but is at his best as a stretch four-man. He has a very good jump hook and solid low post moves now with good overall footwork. He is also able to step outside and shoot the basketball with good confidence. Savage is also a very good shotblocker and a very active rebounder that plays with good intensity. He has a nice overall level of skill and talent that should really develop over time, Savage has a bright future ahead of him. Look for this young man to begin to garner serious recruiting attention over time. He should develop into one of the more sought after post recruiting targets next spring.
John Price 6-9 JR PF Peoria HS - 2019 Class
Price is a good-sized and strong stretch 4-man prospect with a nice overall motor and good physical strength and athleticism. He has developed a great deal over the past year. He can score inside and out and runs the floor, while being able to finish strong inside the paint. Does not mind physical contact and gets to the free-throw line quite often. Has solid low-post moves and footwork. He has good hands and is a good finisher around the basket, keeping the basketball up high on rebounds. He is an active rebounder and shotblocker. A very good sleeper prospect.
Miles Houston 6-7 JR PF Hamilton HS - 2019 Class
Houston is a good-looking, skilled stretch 4-man prospect with good potential for the future. He has a nice looking frame and is has good overall size, but may be a bit of a tweener, depending on the level he plays at in the future. A solid shooter of the basketball from mid-range, and he has solid low-post moves around the basket - an area of his game that he is best at. A solid athlete. An active rebounder. Runs the floor well and is a solid finisher in the open floor. With serious hard work, this young man could develop a great deal over time. A good looking young man with some upside.
John Olmstead 6-10 Junior PF/C Morenci High School - 2019 Class
Olmstead's is a solid low-post prospect with good overall upside. He has a very good jump hook, which he can get off quite easily and seems to be very accurate with it, even while contested. He has good low-post footwork and, overall, has good hands and feet which allow him to run the floor quite well and finish plays around the paint. He runs the floor like a small forward, which is quite attractive for a low post player, and also suggests that he should develop nicely into his body as he continues to grow over time. Olmstead is also an active rebounder and shotblocker with good timing - keeping balls in play that he blocks. He will need to add some serious physical size to his very thin frame over time, and, as he matures physically and gets much stronger, he will see his game really develop. As a basketball prospect, Olmstead should develop nicely over the next two years of high school into a low to mid-major plus division-I prospect.
Takari Fields 6-8 JR AZ Compass Prep - 2019 Class
Fields is a prototypical power-forward prospect that enjoys playing with his back to the basket and does not mind physical contact. He is an active rebounder that keeps the basketball up high for finishes and offensive put-backs, and his left-handed shooting prowess is developing, which allows him to finish plays in traffic and also stretch out to 18 feet and keep defenses honest on the floor. As he gains more consistency on his outside shooting stroke, and becomes more explosive off the ground, he will see his game progress a great deal. An active and aggressive power forward prospect that plays both ends of the floor. Has excellent potential for the future. A nice looking 4-man prospect with a bright future ahead of him.
Vean Simon 6-3 JR SG Chandler HS - 2019 Class
Simon is a nice talent on both ends of the floor, and he came up big recently in the main Event - helping lead his program to the tournament title. His ability to lock up defensively and make plays is impressive and allows him to be a nice asset on the court. Simon is a cerebral talent with a good overall feel for the game and a soft shooting stroke with range on his shot, which allows him to be an asset on both ends of the floor his team. A great student as well, Simon has the potential to play at the next level, as a result of his ability to get it done on and off the court.
Top Overall 2020 Class Performers
Xavier Dusell 6-4 SOPH PG/SG Chaparral HS - 2020 Class
While Dusell is not a true sleeper prospect, since has been heralded as a top-rated prospect in the class for many years. But after a sub-par sophomore season, his resurgence this spring has made him one of the top up-and-coming prospects out there to watch. I have been extremely impressed with this young man's ability to play the game recently, I have been much more impressed with his ability to play the game and even take over games at times. As a result, Dusell is a big time player that has the ability to play at a much higher level than he has shown.
Jerry Lliya 6-6 SOPH SF Phoenix Christian HS - 2020 Class
Lliya is an ultra-athletic wing prospect with an ability to play well above the rim in a halfcourt set or in the fullcourt, while slashing to the basket. He attempts to dunk everything, every chance he gets and is a human highlight reel in the open floor. While his overall offensive skills still need work, his size and bounce off the floor at such a young age are very unique. Lliya has an inconsistent shooting stroke still, so he is at his best while slashing to the basket or from mid-range. He is an excellent offensive rebounder after putbacks or dunks off missed shots. Lliya's best attribute is his excellent motor. He has a motor that doesn't stop and continues to run at a high rate for long periods of time on the floor, and never seems to slow down, which allows him to make plays consistently on the court. He has the potential to become a very good defender, as a result of such energy and work ethic, and with continued focus, he could become a lock-down defender over time. A definite high level two-way player. The best overall sleeper prospect for the spring, since no one has really seen him, and he is the best overall unknown talent in the state.
Khalid Whitaker 5-10 SOPH PG Flowing Wells HS - 2020 Class
Whitaker is a floor general with a nice overall feel for the game, and a love for passing the basketball and setting up his teammates on the floor. A strong ball handler that can get to anywhere he wants to on the floor. May dribble too deep at times. Has very good quickness. A solid shooter. A good finisher in the lane and in the open floor. A good on the ball defender.
Trent Hudgins 6-2 SOPH SG Moon Valley HS - 2021 Class
Hudgins is one of the best guard prospects in the West, and is loking to make a name for himself among the best guard prospects in the class. As a result, Hudgins recently showcased his skillset and proved that he can play with the best guard prospects in the state. Hudgins is a young prospect with a nice overall skillset and an ability to play the game at a high level. He is a nice offensive weapon with a nice ability to push the ball up the floor and make plays for himself and others.
DeAndre Henry 6-8 SOPH PF Mountain Pointe HS - 2021 Class
Henry is a big-time two-sport athlete with loads of potential for the future. He currently has numerous offers on the table for hismelf for football, but is worthy of some serious attention in the sport of basketball as well. Henry is a nice athletic forward prospect with an ability to run the floor hard and make plays on both ends of the floor. He is an active rebounder and is also a strong finisher around the basket. Henry will anchor the front court for Team Harden this spring and summer on their 16U team, and will look to raise his recruiting stock a great deal over the next year. A good sleeper prospect for the future.
Top Overall 2021 Prospects
Ricardo Sarmiento 5-9 FR PG Cesar Chavez HS - 2021 Class
Sarmiento is a steady point guard prospect with a nice overall feel for the game and an ability to run a team and make plays for himself and others. He is coming off a strong freshman season for himself and now is preparing himself for a strong spring and summer as well. Sarmiento is a nice young talent with excellent potential for the future and a strong ability to play the game. He has been around the game for much of his life and has the potential to become a serious division-I prospect over time.
Ty Ty Washington 6-3 FR PG/SG Cesar Chavez HS - 2021 Class
Washington is another really nice talent that can play both guard positions on the floor. He has the potential to play as a point guard full time over time, but he will need to continue to develop in this area of his game first. While I have not seen him play as much as I would like to this spring thus far, I am looking forward to watch him this spring and summer, as he looks to lead his 16U team to a strong performance. Washington is already receiving loads of college attention early, but he is still very young so I still consider him a sleeper prospect.